TEDDY KUYELA, Lusaka
CONSTITUENCY service is the general term for what members of Parliament (MPs)do to serve and represent the interests of their constituents. undeniably, MPs are representatives of the people and this places them in a position to speak for the electorate.
In fact, they are elected so that they spearhead developmental projects in their constituencies and see that the projects are executed according to the contracts entered into with government.
In short, they are an important link between the governors and the governed, they are the voice of the people, tasked to trumpet their developmental needs.
This year, the race to Parliament has started and hundreds of people have applied to contest seats across the country on various political party tickets and are asking the electorate to vote for them in the forthcoming general elections and be their representatives for the next five years.
This follows the dissolution of Parliament last month by President Lungu in accordance with Article 81 of the Zambian constitution.
In Matero constituency, four candidates have successfully filed their nominations and these include Kaziya Mulenga of the Patriotic Front (PF), Phillimon Lwabila of UNIP, UPNDâ€™s Tom Michelo and Sydney Chewe of the FDD.
The candidates are all contesting the seat for the first time and have expressed confidence of scooping the seat.
PF – Kaziya Mulenga
A vivacious and newcomer on the political scene, contesting the seat on the ruling partyâ€™s ticket. He has promised to change the face of Matero Township. Mr Mulenga is a degree-holder in business administration obtained from Solusi University in Zimbabwe.
He is a married man with four children and he is also a businessman who has promised to improve the water reticulation as well as sanitation in the area. Mr Mulenga was born in 1967 and attended his primary school at Mutende Primary School in Mansa, Chaisa and Thornpark primary schools respectively in Lusaka. He completed his secondary school at Kabulonga Boys and later went to do a two-year certificate course in accounts and business studies in 1988.
Mr Mulenga worked for the Zambia Consolidated Copper Mines as an accounts assistant in 1990 and in 1991 he resigned his position and joined Zanaco bank Choma branch where he worked for six years before being transferred to the head office in Lusaka where he rose to the position of bank supervisor.
In December 2001, Mr Mulenga was introduced to politics and last year he became interested in contesting the Matero seat under the PF ticket. He was adopted this year based on his involvement in community work in Matero and other surrounding areas.
Mr Mulenga has promised the electorate clean water and sanitation as well as to upgrade Matero and George-Lilanda markets if voted MP. He has also promised to work on the inner roads and push for the construction of a skills training centre to help empower youths with income generating activities.
Phillimon Lwabila was born in Kabwe, formerly Broken Hill, the capital Town of Central Province on January 11, 1955. Mr Lwabila attended local distance public schools, where he excelled. He proceeded to Serenje Boys School to pursue his senior secondary education where he rose to the position of school head-boy in 1977.
He attended the compulsory national service military training at Chishimba Military Camp in Kasama before he was admitted at Kasama Teacherâ€™s Training College (KTTC) where he trained as primary school teacher.
At the age of 24, he served in the Army Reserve Force of the Zambia National Defence Force at Tug Argan Barracks in Ndola in the same year 1979 and contributed in the liberation struggle for Southern Africa that led to the independence of Zimbabwe and South Africa under the 25 Light Air Defence Regiment.
Upon completion of his teacher training in 1981, Mr Lwabila was posted to Lusaka, where he worked in three schools during his service namely New Kanyama, Kizito and Emmasdale primary schools.
At Kizito he worked for 23 years. In his service, Mr Lwabila known for his incorruptible, upright, serious minded character and for being committed to developing children towards achieving their full potential rose through ranks from class teacher to the position of school head teacher the position which he held until retired in 2011.
In the course of his service, Mr Lwabila endeavoured to acquire himself two university diplomas, one in secondary education and the other in education management respectively, both from Chongweâ€™s National ln-service Teacher Training College NISTCOL now Chalibana University.
Dating back to his term in office as head teacher, Mr Lwabila ensured the completion of the recreational school hall at the school he was heading, Emmasdale Basic, and helped establish the University of Zambia (UNZA) Extension Studies Centre by allowing the UNZA Department of Adult Education to provide the surrounding community members with access to university education at their door steps.
Mr Lwabila has the interest of representing the people of Matero and has promised to upgrade some primary schools into secondary schools as well as improve the water reticulation in the area if ushered into office as MP.
UPND – Tom Michelo
He is an effervescent and also a newcomer on Zambiaâ€™s political scene and has also promised the people of Matero meaningful development if he is ushered into office as MP in the forthcoming August 11, polls.
Mr Michelo has vowed he will become the next MP for Matero and that he will work round the clock to help uplift the welfare of people in the area.
FDD – Sydney Chewe
He is grateful and humbled to be adopted to contest the Matero seat and has promised to offer meaningful development in the area if elected MP.
â€œI am confident that the people will vote for me so that we continue with the development programmes,â€ he said.
MPs are elected for a five-year term on the basis of elections at which every adult person aged 18 years of age and above and permanently resident in Zambia is entitled to vote.
MPs shoulder a great responsibility to the voters and those who usher them into office expect representatives to fulfil their promises.
It is for this reason that the electorate should weigh and scrutinise messages of development that the aspiring candidates are promising before voting for them.
It is common to hear every candidate promise to bring development to the people.
Sadly, in a number of cases, once the euphoria of an election has died down, the dust has settled and the winner takes up his seat in Parliament, it is the end of the story.
Matero Constituency: More development needed
TEDDY KUYELA, Lusaka